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2010’s Ten Biggest, Most Memorable Events
As we cast our reflective mind’s eyes into the sunset this year, we can be struck with awe at what has happened. All of our years are filled with stuff, and this year MMX has seen no less drama and tragedy than we’re used to. Perhaps in terms of magnitude, the following ten events can be considered (in reverse “countdown” order of importance) the most significant and memorable (so far):
NUMBER TEN – “End of H1N1 Flu”
The World Health Organization (WHO) calls for an end to the H1N1 flu pandemic on August 10. Illness due to influenza is now said to be back to “typical seasonal patterns”.
NUMBER NINE – “Synthesized Genome and ‘Extraterrestrial’ Life Forms”
A “working” synthetic genome is officially created by scientists on May 20, synthesizing a bacterium, but the Venter group stops short of calling it a breakthrough. In addition, an arsenic-based life form (bacteria) is discovered on December 2 by NASA.
NUMBER EIGHT – “World Sport Top Two”
The 2010 FIFA World Cup is played in South Africa between June 11 and July 11 and is won by Spain. Additionally, the 2010 (twenty-first) Winter Olympics are being held in Vancouver and Whistler from February 12-28. The home team, Canada, won the most gold.
ISSUE SEVEN – “Repercussions of the Global Financial Crisis”
The depth of the global financial crisis continues to hit some countries hard, with Greece (May 2) and Ireland (November 29) being bailed out with money market funds to the tune of €110 billion and €85 billion respectively.
ISSUE SIX – “Mining Disasters”
The trapped Chilean miners, all thirty-three, are brought to the surface on October 13 after 69 days of captivity deep in the earth. Less fortunate are the twenty-nine New Zealand miners at Pike River Coal Mine, Atarau, who were trapped on November 19 by a first explosion, only to be almost certainly killed by a second explosion on November 24.
NUMBER FIVE – “Created Antimatter”
Antimatter is trapped for a sixth of a second, where thirty-eight antihydrogen atoms are temporarily retained, at CERN (European Organization for Nuclear Research) on November 17. This is the first time in history that man has achieved this.
NUMBER FOUR – “Wikileaks”
The “Wikileaks” scandal leaks nearly 100,000 classified and secret reports on July 25 and the scandal surrounds issues from embarrassed governments to people jostling to damage their reputations. The scandal evolves over the remainder of 2010.
ISSUE THREE – “Eyjafjallajökull Volcanic Ash Halts Air Traffic”
The Icelandic volcano initially erupted on March 20, but on April 14 it entered an explosive phase and the resulting ash was thrown 30,000 feet into the air, threatening European airspace. It disrupted the travel and return plans of millions of people intermittently during the period from April 15 to May 17 and it included periods of complete closure of European airspace. This further proves the theory that God always has the final say on our plans.
ISSUE TWO – “Deepwater Horizon Disaster”
The Deepwater Horizon oil rig in the Gulf of Mexico is crippled by an explosion on April 20 and eleven workers are killed. It ends up being one of the greatest environmental disasters of all time. The safety and ethics of offshore drilling are questioned internationally.
NUMBER ONE – “Earthquake in Haiti”
The 7.0 magnitude earthquake that shook and shocked Port-au-Prince, Haiti on January 12 is devastating a nation ill-equipped to deal with such destruction. The world responds with sympathy and help, and the “Helping Haiti” appeal, song and concerts sought to instill hope in a situation of helplessness. More than 230,000 people died from it.
Copyright (c) 2010 SJ Wickham.
Acknowledgement: source of information from various pages on Wikipedia.
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